Finland’s 21st Century Government. 4 Ministers Under 35 Years Of Age Including Prime Minister Sanna Marin a merely 34. They Are All Women. And Who Are They?


Sanna Marin is just 34 and can you believe that she is all set to swear in as Finland’s Prime Minister? With this, Marin will become the world’s youngest prime minister and thereby, change the dynamics of world politics. BY CRIMSON TAZVINZWA–

Social Democrats’s Marin will run a coalition government with four parties which are headed by women. Three of the party leaders are under 35 – Li Andersson (32), Katri Kulmuni (32), Maria Ohisalo (34) and Anna Ma-Ja Henrikkson (55).

Netizens rejoiced after the news and hailed Finland as a progressive nation. Finnish politician Alexander Stubb, whose party could not make it to the government, proudly shared the piece of news on Twitter.

“My party is not in government, but I rejoice that the leaders of the five parties in government are female. Shows that #Finland is a modern and progressive country. The majority of my government was also female. One day gender will not matter in government. Meanwhile pioneers,” Alexander Stubb said in his caption.

Meanwhile; not very long ago, but in the far-flung part of the world –  Jacinda Ardenbecame New Zealand Prime Minister – breaking the record as the youngest female leader of a country in the world.

A mere two months after Jacinda Ardern became the youngest-ever leader of New Zealand’s Labour Party, she became the country’s youngest Prime Minister in 150 years, and its youngest female PM, ever.

Her rise was so meteoric that it earned a proper name: Jacindamania.


England fined over response to New Zealand ‘haka’ ritual dance


TOKYO — England have been fined for their response to the haka before Saturday’s World Cup semi-final victory over New Zealand, despite All Blacks coach Steve Hansen describing their V-shaped formation as “brilliant” and “imaginative.” AIWA! NO!

England fanned out across the pitch as the All Blacks delivered the challenge, with several players who crossed the halfway line standing their ground when officials tried to usher them back.

World Rugby regulations stipulate opponents must not cross the halfway line while the haka is being performed. It did not disclose the size of the fine, which is to be donated to charity.

“England have been fined for a breach of World Cup tournament rules relating to cultural challenges, which states that no players from the team receiving the challenge may advance beyond the halfway line,” the sport’s governing body said in a statement.

“This is in line with the protocol which operates globally across the international game.”

In the 2011 tournament France were fined 2,500 pounds ($3,216.75) when they also advanced on the haka before the final.

Asked about England’s actions after the match, captain Owen Farrell said: “We didn’t just want to stand in a flat line and let them come at us.”

World Rugby’s Youtube video of the incident, titled “England’s incredible response to intense New Zealand haka” with a commentator saying “you want box office? You’ve got it,” has been viewed more than four million times.

New Zealand coach Hansen said on Wednesday he had no problems with England’s response.

“If you understand the haka, then the haka requires a response,” he said. “It is a challenge to you personally and it requires you to have a response.

“I thought it was brilliant and quite imaginative too.”

Fellow New Zealander Warren Gatland took a similar view, with the Wales coach calling it a “perfect response.”

“For them to do something like that is completely respectful as far as I’m concerned,” he said. “They didn’t turn their backs or anything like that. They stood there and received the haka.

“Ireland in Chicago a few years ago did a number eight in respect for Anthony Foley and other teams have done it in their own way. “I was involved with the All Blacks against Ireland and Willie Anderson linked arms with everyone else and they marched forwards.

“After the match they were severely criticized by the press for how disrespectful that was. As All Blacks, no one mentioned a thing afterwards.”

The haka, he added, was a challenge to an opponent’s toughness and physicality.

“It’s important you don’t take a backward step and you respond respectfully. England did that.”


Saudi King invites survivor and victims’ relatives of New Zealand shooting to make holy pilgrimage to the Hajj


They survived the Christchurch terror attacks. In Mecca, they’re finding peace as Hajj pilgrims//CRIMSON TAZVINZWA

(CNN)When 31-year-old Maryam Gul laid eyes on the Kaaba this week, it was a moment of complete peace. The cube-shaped structure, and most sacred shrine of Islam, felt a world away from the Linwood mosque at Christchurch, New Zealand where her mother, father and brother were fatally gunned down earlier this year.

“I thought I am looking at a symbol, a symbol of peace. A symbol of God. He’s here,” Gul told CNN.
Gul is one of 200 people who arrived in Mecca, Saudi Arabia from Christchurch this week to perform the annual Hajj pilgrimage, which began on Friday. They are survivors of the March 2019 terror attacks at two Christchurch mosques as well as the relatives of those who were slain in the shootings.
Fifty-one people were killed in the attack by a white nationalist gunman during Friday prayers.
Saudi Arabia’s King Salman extended the invitation to the group for the all-expenses-paid pilgrimage in July. CNN’s interviews with Christchurch pilgrims in Mecca were facilitated by the kingdom’s Center of International Communications.
In a statement published by the official Saudi news agency, Minister for Islamic Affairs Abdullatif bin Abdulaziz Al-Sheikh said the state-funded trip was part of the kingdom’s efforts to “confront and defeat terrorism and terrorists.” Christchurch survivors and victims’ relatives say the pilgrimage has been a means to healing from the violence that changed their lives.

Saudi Arabia’s King Salman has invited about 200 victims’ relatives and survivors of the Christchurch massacre to his country for a holy pilgrimage.

The Saudi king is paying for the airfare, accommodation and travel costs, which could cost over $1 million, as they perform hajj, the holy Muslim pilgrimage to Mecca.

The pilgrimage is required for all able-bodied Muslims to perform at least once in their lifetime, with many believers saving for years to make the trip. The annual pilgrimage draws nearly 2 million Muslims from around the world to Mecca and sites around it.


The Saudi ambassador to New Zealand, Abdulrahman Al Suhaibani, said the king invited the survivors and victims’ relatives because he was shocked by the March 15 attack at two mosques by an Australian white supremacist that killed 51 people.

Among those who have accepted the king’s offer was Temel Atacocugu, a 44-year-old kebab shop co-owner, who was seriously scarred by nine bullets shot by the gunman.

Atacocugu was confronted by the gunman face-to-face during the shooting, with the gunman firing a bullet into Atacocugu’s mouth, shattering his jaw.

“And then I said, ‘Oh my God, I am dying.’ When I see he’s shooting, when I see the smoke, I said, ‘Yeah, I’m dying.’ That’s the first thought,” said Atacocugu, adding that he then began protecting his vital organs as the shooter continued to fire bullets at him.

He said that since the tragedy nearly five months ago and extensive recovery efforts, he now feels “reborn” and welcomes the opportunity to express his gratitude to God for being given the chance for a new life when he participates in the hajj.


In this July 31, 2019, photo, Temel Atacocugu, who was shot nine times during the Christchurch mosque attacks, tries on the clothes he will wear during the Hajj pilgrimage, in Christchurch, New Zealand. He is among 200 survivors and relatives from the Christchurch mosque shootings who are traveling to Saudi Arabia as guests of King Salman for the Hajj pilgrimage, a trip many hope will help them to heal. (AP Photo/Nick Perry)

The king typically invites several hundred people each year to perform the hajj as his own guests, often picking those most touched by tragedy that year. The ambassador said this was the first time he invited anyone from New Zealand.

Two weeks ago, the ambassador traveled to Christchurch to hand out the simple white garments the male pilgrims will wear. The terry cloth garments worn by men are meant to strip pilgrims down of adornment and symbolize the equality of mankind before God.

“It’s a wonderful time and this is a golden chance for people to get spiritual elevation,” said Gamal Fouda, the imam at the Al Noor mosque, one of the two mosques that were attacked.

Fouda, who also survived the shootings, said he’s traveling with the group as a spiritual leader. He said the memories of the shooting remain fresh in everybody’s minds and his mosque hasn’t yet returned to normal.

“The most important thing is that the New Zealand community, including Muslims, they stood together against hate,” Fouda says. “And we are still saying that hate is not going to divide us. We will continue to love each other.”

The Associated Press contributed to this report.


New Zealand end Australia’s winning streak by 1 point in Netball World Cup 2019 final


The New Zealand Ferns beat the Australian Diamonds by 52-51 in a nail-biting final. This was the seventh Netball World Cup final between the two teams, and only the second time that New Zealand have come out on top.

Noeline Taurua is a netballing genius.

How else do you explain her 11-month transformation of the Silver Ferns?

From rock bottom to back where New Zealand netball belongs, sporting resurrections don’t come any more seamless.

No other netball figure could have guided the Ferns to an unlikely World Cup final in Liverpool, from fourth-ranked in the world, not so soon after last year’s Commonwealth Games capitulation where New Zealand lost to Malawi.


England suffer agonising New Zealand defeat – Netball World Cup 2019


‘Roses’ hearts are broken!’ England lose exciting semi-final to NZ

England missed out on the Netball World Cup final once again as they fell to an agonising 47-45 defeat by New Zealand in Liverpool/By Denise Evans, BBC Sport in Liverpool

New Zealand go on to face holders Australia in Sunday’s final for a sixth consecutive tournament.

England have now lost eight straight World Cup semi-finals and face South Africa in the bronze-medal match.

They will match their achievements from 2015 if they beat the Proteas, who were narrowly beaten by Australia in the opening semi-final.

Tracey Neville’s Roses famously fought back to snatch a late win in the gold-medal match against the Diamonds at the Commonwealth Games in 2018.

But this time they were on the receiving end of the disappointment.

New Zealand showed their intent by surging into a 5-0 lead as England panicked, but the Roses regrouped to take a three-goal lead into half-time.

Until this match, England had not come from behind in the tournament and as the Silver Ferns pushed back in front, they looked intent on staying there.

England threw everything at the Kiwis in the final quarter – but their opposition soaked up the pressure and played down the seconds left on the clock.

What went wrong for England?

England did not look like the confident team who came through the group stages without losing a quarter.

Shooter Jo Harten’s form dropped dramatically in the first half, compared to her heroics in the previous game against South Africa, and she only improved when she moved to goal attack.

England’s engine room and captain Serena Guthrie was also guilty of failing to bring the goods on the day.

Head coach Neville said her side’s “basic errors” cost them the game.

“New Zealand came out really strong in that first quarter, “she said. “We didn’t learn our lessons quickly enough. We seemed to be chasing the game, which is something we haven’t done in this tournament.

“We gave it our all but didn’t have the legs. This tournament is quite brutal. We’ve got another game tomorrow and we go again.”

‘We’ve already won in some respects’

It was a rocky road to this final for New Zealand. They failed to reach the Commonwealth finals in 2018 for the first time and dropped to fourth in the rankings, one place behind England.

Off the court, key player Laura Langman, who has made more than 100 international appearances, was out of the set-up for 18 months because she chose to play her club netball in Australia.

But the arrival of coach Noeline Taurua in 2018 led to those club rules being relaxed and now Langman, along with veteran defender Casey Kopua, will get a shot at gold again in what is likely to be their last World Cup.

“I’m a bit lost for words,” said Taurua. “We’ve got one more game to go to get the gold and that’s what we’re going for.

“We’ve already won in some respects. We were underdogs coming into this game. There’s nothing else for us to worry about.”

New Zealand came close to beating the Diamonds in the preliminary stages and this victory over the hosts will surely give them the belief they need to beat their long-time rivals.

BBC Sport has launched #ChangeTheGame this summer to showcase female athletes in a way they never have been before. Through more live women’s sport available to watch across the BBC this summer, complemented by our journalism, we are aiming to turn up the volume on women’s sport and alter perceptions. Find out more here.